The Republican Party of Guam has issued a statement saying that Gov. Lou Leon Guerrero should be transparent with the federal dollars received by GovGuam.
“It is unfortunate that Governor Lou Leon Guerrero’s administration fails to share with the community their spending plan from the federal dollars provided to the island as part of the American Rescue Plan (ARP). What is their hesitance? Do they even have a plan?” the Guam GOP stated.
According to the Republican Party of Guam, the 36th Guam Legislature collectively provided both the Governor and the community with their spending recommendations on the ARP more than a month ago.
“This was after Governor Leon Guerrero made the request. Ironically, this is the same Governor who made it known in a stern fashion on more than one occasion, that she, and only she, can determine how federal dollars are spent on the island. So, the question now is, since the Legislature shared their plan, why does she refuse to do the same in return? What does she have to hide?” the Guam GOP asked.
The Republican Party added that some states and territories have already started spending their ARP funds, but on Guam the money continues to remain in the government’s bank.
“Hopefully, it is earning interest for taxpayers. Is it possible that Governor Leon Guerrero wants to hold the funds until 2022, as it can be used to hire family and friends, or invest in some optics for her re-election campaign, as that would be the political thing to do? This is unfortunately taking place in some states,” the GOP stated.
The GOP added: “The Republican Party of Guam simply asks the Leon Guerrero administration to be honest and transparent and simply advise the people of Guam on how these federal dollars will be spent. The monies were not provided for political purposes, or re-election campaigns, they were provided to help the island recover from this economic crisis.”
The governor has stated that she still needs to get the final guidelines on the ARP money.
“I don’t want to do a program and then later, the federal government is going to tell me that it’s not an eligible program to do. So I want to make sure we clear that before we actually implement the program. And that’s why I’m very adamant that we stick to the fact that we need to get the final rules so we will understand exactly what it is that we need to do and we will do,” Leon Guerrero said in an interview with NewsTalk K57’s Patti Arroyo Monday morning.
She added: “I have just been talking to various other states and other states are doing the same thing. They are not spending or distributing their ARP until they see the final rules because of experience and learning from the CARES Act.”